Commenting on the publication of Public Health Scotland's evaluation of the Scottish Government shielding programme, Health Secretary Jeane Freeman said:
“This publication and its findings are welcomed showing that shielding guidance did change behaviours, and that the shielding support provided addressed real need.
“While the principle of protecting those at higher risk of infection remains valid, there are a number of lessons we can take forward from the shielding programme which will help us inform and strengthen our future policies to protect at-risk groups.
“For example we are not, at this stage, asking people on the shielding list to go back into the very restrictive form of shielding we saw last March because we know how difficult that was, and how much of a detrimental impact on mental and physical wellbeing it had.
“I want to take this opportunity to thank those who continue to follow the shielding advice for their significant sacrifices. And I want to thank those individuals who took part in the survey and other important research work for their valuable contribution to this evaluation.
“If you are in the shielding category and aged 16 and over, you’ll receive the first dose of the vaccine by mid-February. You can still sign up for our text alert service via www.mygov.scot/shielding so we can keep you updated.”